Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Peters fly away

photo by kevinmarsh

Yesterday I was priviliged to drive the Peters' family to the airport. We packed everything in their mini-SUV. Tom drove us briskly to the airport.

Tom charged me to park and to come inside after dropping them off at curbside check-in. He wanted to make sure that each piece of their luggage was under the fifty pound weight limit. Otherwise, I would have to take things back to the Mazda and transport it back to Smithville.

God answered our prayers. The luggage made it. One piece was 51 pounds, but the others were under 5o pounds. So the ticket agent approved them all.

As I was sent off with parking lot money, I marveled at how amazing God is. My friends were departing for ministry to the Central African Republic.

In twenty hours they would be arriving to serve the people of the Central African Republic. They were doing this as a family. Sue, J.P., and Mike were traveling with Tom. What a blessing to witness these fully-devoted followers seeking to serve God in Africa.

May God give their family a positive witness to the local Christians and to the unsaved in Bangui and beyond. I hope to get an update from them soon. We serve a mighty God on mission through us!

Monday, January 5, 2009

The Ant Got it Right

photo by contraption

In the spectre of "chicken little" despair regarding the economy and the economic crisis, I am so glad that God's Word gives guidance. In our new series, "Surviving your own economic crisis," Pastor Bob offered five habits that will produce financial freedom in your life from the Bible.

These five habits shared yesterday, I adapted into my own words (you can hear yesterday's sermon here):

  1. Keep good records

  2. Prepare your budget

  3. Start saving

  4. Practice tithing

  5. Engage contentment

Each habit is grounded in Scripture. Keep good records means know where your money comes from and where you spend it (Proverbs 27:23). Prepare your budget means plan for your spending (Proverbs 21:5). Start saving means prepare for the future (Proverbs 21:20). Practice tithing begins with giving to the church at least 10% of your income (Malachi 3:10). To engage contentment means pursing contentment (Hebrews 13:5).

The one illustration that sticks with me today is the ant. In Proverbs 6:6,8, the Bible says, "Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise! It stores its provisions in summer and gathers its food at harvest."

The ant is diligent and wise preparing for the coming winter by storing food during the summer. National Geographic Kids has a great, short clip to illustrate ant power and diligence. (be sure to pause the video at the end or you'll see another clip about butterflies :).

As this new year begins, I know that God has prompted me to begin establishing a new pattern for the coming year. I need to keep better records and to stay within a budget.

Yes, even a pastor needs help. Doesn't everyone need help with finances?